Sunday, March 27, 2011

Carl Barks would have been 110 today

Company owned comic books did not always credit individual creators, but Carl Barks became one of the first to become well known. He began working for Disney in 1935 as an inbetweener, drawing the scenes showing movement between the key poses drawn by animators. In the 1940s he moonlighted as a comics artist, specializing in Donald Duck stories. Over time people began to recognize his style whether in comedies or imaginative adventure stories, and he came to be known as "The Good Duck Artist." It was not until 1960 that his name appeared in the comics and he became generally known.

Although he "retired" in the 1960s, Carl Barks worked on duck comics for 30 more years. He created a vast array of characters, notably Scrooge McDuck, the Beagle Boys, the Junior Woodchucks, Gyro Gearloose, and Gladstone Gander. An encyclopedic list of all the Disney comics Barks worked on is here.

An international superstar whose work has been enjoyed by millions upon millions, Barks was among the inaugural class inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame. Showing just how far-reaching his influence has been, an asteroid was named after him by a scientist he inspired with his stories.

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